Alex Ovechkin has faced down many goaltenders over the course of his NHL career. But when asked by Rob Carlin on the Capitals Talk podcast which current netminder gives him the most trouble, Ovi didn’t hesitate with his answer: Braden Holtby.
With Holtby tying Olie Kolzig for most shutouts in Capitals franchise history last season, as well as becoming the second-fastest goaltender in NHL history to reach 250 wins, it is no wonder Ovechkin finds him difficult to beat.
Ovechkin also discussed some of the players that he, and Nicklas Backstrom, believe are the best in the NHL right now. Oh, and they picked a goaltender other than Holtby for the honor of toughest to beat as well, we guess.
Rob Carlin: “Who’s your favourite player in the game right now? Someone that you would pay to watch if you weren’t playing against them? Other than anyone on your team, who’s your favorite player to watch around hockey?”
Nicklas Backstrom: “Tough one. I don’t even watch hockey anymore.”
Rob Carlin: “Is that right?”
Alex Ovechkin: “Yeah, me too. Me too. I’ll be honest, yeah.”
Nicklas Backstrom: “Couple of years ago I used to watch NHL network, but not anymore.”
Alex Ovechkin: “Highlights. Alex Ovechkin highlights. YouTube, for sure. Not right now.”
Rob Carlin: “Other than YouTube, who do you think is the best player in the game right now?”
Alex Ovechkin: “I think it’s hard to say. Of course, McDavid’s up there. Of course Kucherov, MacKinnon. But you can’t pick one. It’s hard to say.”
Nicklas Backstrom: “It’s tough, and so many good players out there. But as Ovi said, I mean, a lot of players up [there]. And someone that he didn’t mention that has three Cups is maybe Crosby too, so.”
Alex Ovechkin: “No, Sid of course up there too.”
Nicklas Backstrom: “He’s up there. I mean, I think all of them are up there.”
Alex Ovechkin: “You can’t pick one, I think.”
Nicklas Backstrom: “No. It’s very tough. But, yeah, those guys are up there. And obviously, Alex.”
Rob Carlin: “Right, you two, obviously. Toughest goalie to score on and why? Or to face and why? Who’s the guy who just gives you fits?”
Alex Ovechkin: “Holtby.”
Rob Carlin: “In practice?”
Alex Ovechkin: “Yeah.”
Rob Carlin: “Other than anyone on the Capitals? Is there a guy that you’re like ‘tonight’s going to be a tough one because this guy always is tough against us?’ Or do you not even think that way?”
Nicklas Backstrom: “I usually think that way. But for a goal scorer, you probably don’t think that way, right?”
Alex Ovechkin: “No. Of course, sometimes you feel, ‘okay, we going to play against Lundquist, what’s his side, what’s his good thing and bad thing?’ You just think about okay, if you in this position what you going to do about it. Anyway, on the ice you just don’t think about who’s in net. If [Backstrom] makes a great pass, I just have to make a good shot. And same way. I don’t know.”
Nicklas Backstrom: “I think maybe one guy that’s big in the net is probably Tampa’s goalie. Vasilevsky. He’s tall and he’s big.
Alex Ovechkin: Vasilevsky. Yeah, Vasilevsky.”
Headline photo: @Capitals
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